Birth: A History by Tina Cassidy


Birth: A History by Tina Cassidy is a cultural history of childbirth that covers the evolution of childbirth, the role of midwives, famous obstetricians, and the many ways childbirth has been deadly.

The book explores why birth can be so difficult, where women deliver, and how childbirth has changed over time. Cassidy presents an intelligent, enlightening, and impeccably researched world history of how and why we are born the way we are.

The main themes of the book include the medicalization of childbirth, the role of men in childbirth, the history of pain relief during childbirth, and the impact of bipedalism on childbirth. The book also covers the dangers of childbirth, including maternal-fetal mortalities, and the differences between human and animal births.

Useful takeaways from the book include the fact that humans are the only mammal that require assistance to give birth, the history of the epidural, and the impact of genital mutilation on maternal mortality rates. The book also highlights the importance of midwives and the dangers of medicalizing childbirth. Overall, Birth: A History is an engaging and informative read that sheds light on the fascinating history of childbirth.

What I Liked

I love that this book exists. It’s thoughtful, well-researched, well-presented, embraces complexity, and does a good job explaining how childbirth has changed over time. It’s a must-read for any parents to be.

What I Did Not Like

Nothing – A++ book.

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